Saturday, April 29, 2017

Extra Credit Post: The UNL Fashion Show

My UNL event I went to this was the UNL fashion show called Metamorphosis. The event was held off campus for space reasons at the quilt museum, and was put on by the UNL Fashion majors who are in the UNL department of textiles, merchandising and fashion design. I would be lying if i said the campus event had much to do with rhetoric but in a sense it did. First off much like in rhetorical argument a designer tries to make a point to the audience that what the people are seeing is up and coming, that it is bold and creative, that what the audience truly is seeing is fashion. The audience can respond in two ways to this argument, to agree and think "wow that outfit is beautiful, or I don't understand, how is this fashion?". To try and sway the audience the the designer and the model wearing the outfit must engage with the audience to try and appeal to them and put up a good argument for why there outfit is where fashion should be headed.

Pathos, Logos, and Ethos are all used in this process but not in the way people use in a rhetorical argument. For example look at logos. I do not know much about fashion but my girlfriend who has been modeling for quite some time will tell me what and why she likes certain outfits people have. She will go with style, texture, matching, and explain how the outfit is relevant to the trends now or outdated. When she does this, not only do I know she knows what shes talking about because she is informed, but because she is also in the industry that dictates what and what is not relevant in the fashion industry. So i think her arguments are very logical on why outfits will or will not be fashionable and when she told me before the show that she loved what she was wearing, due to her previous logical arguments, I assumed she was obviously right and started loving the dress before I even saw it.

It is hard to use Pathos in this situation but I saw it done. Some models would speak after the show to people in the audience about their designs and would tell people about their inspiration and why they made what they did. What I saw a few designers do was relate to the audience by using pathos. They would go into stories about how dresses where dedicated to friends and family, and how they loved certain fabrics and colors and how one woman's dress design was to look fashionable to girls of all sizes and shapes, which made the audience relate and feel emotional support for the woman's design choices all of the sudden. The designers were being honest and not manipulative but I could tell how by giving origins to some of the design ideas, the designers were winning over their audience once again.

I did not see any form of ethos in the show, but I could see how if the fashion show was dedicated to an ethical cause how it would get the audience on the side of the models and designers because they would then most likely believe in the same cause of ethics. This showed me that while rhetoric relates mainly to arguments and persuasive speaking, that anything or anyone can use rhetoric to win over the audience is any setting.

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